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In the exciting weeks of the commencement of the world’s fashion weeks, where the Spring/Summer 2012 collections are presented, the Financial Times premieres  their new section: Luxury 360. A long awaited online hub, tributed to the luxury sector’s many news angles: M&A activity, business gossip, special reports and video interviews with leading industry analysts, journalists, bloggers and directors. Whether your luxury industry interest is special market reports on China; who is taking over the reigns at Louis Vuitton; or you’re simply dying to read the talented Mrs Friedman’s style reports, you can find it here. Even on the go through Twitter!

Personally, I appreciate that the FT finally attributes this  monumental industry their stamp of approval. Although sections on Watches and Jewellery have been included on seasonal occasion, the financial weight of the business of Luxury, has been sidestepped due to the material and conspicuous connotations of the goods involved. Since 2007, where the credit crisis began to tighten its grip around the world’s financial markets, speaking of anything luxury in Western markets, has been considered gaudy. However, Asia had only just begun their love affair with branded goods, as can be seen through Richemont’s recent 29% sales increase – attributable to the growing demand for luxury in China and India. Hopefully this newfound love for conspicuous consumption can save the Western economy as the companies experiencing success through Asia’s growth in consumption, are based in Europe and report their earnings on the Swiss-, London- or NY-Stock Exchange.

Connecting to last week’s post, perhaps Vogue was one step ahead of the FT, when countries such as South Korea, India and Japan were included in Fashion’s Night Out ’11. Through such initiatives, Vogue can create the magic in each city involved, induce the dream of the industry in consumers and fans, and attract and create the demand for fashion and luxury goods worldwide. Another reason for why this industry should be taken more seriously in business: marketing-wise, the FNO initiative has only gotten more efficient and more widespread. Well done Vogue.

Luxurious regards

Stephanie Kiens